Effects of supplementing herbaceous forage legume pellets on growth indices and blood profile of West African dwarf sheep fed Guinea grass

  • Victoria Olubunmi A. OjoEmail author
  • Damilola Kola Oyaniran
  • Ayotunde Oluseun Ogunsakin
  • Ronke Yemisi Aderinboye
  • Oludotun Olusegun Adelusi
  • Folakemi Seidat Odusoga
Regular Articles


Twenty West African dwarf (WAD) rams with average body weight of 12.43 ± 0.5 kg were used for the experiment that lasted 84 days to investigate the effects of supplementing herbaceous forage legume pellets on weight change and blood profile of animals fed Panicum maximum basal diet. Sole Panicum maximum served as the control diet and three other experimental diets were P. maximum supplemented with Lablab purpureus pellets, P. maximum supplemented with Calopogonium mucunoides pellets and P. maximum supplemented with Mucuna pruriens pellets constituted the four treatments which were arranged in a completely randomised design. The rams were divided into four groups of five animals each and were balanced for variation in live weight before they were assigned the experimental diets. Panicum maximum was offered to the animals ad libitum and legume pellets were supplemented. Significant differences (P < 0.05) were observed in weight gain of the rams. Those fed the control diet had the lowest value of 41.88 g/day while rams supplemented L. purpureus pellets had the highest value (83.66 g/day). Haematological parameters, leucocyte values and serum biochemical indices of WAD rams were significantly (P < 0.05) different across the dietary treatments at the final stage of the trial. The values for red blood cells, haemoglobin concentration, packed cell volume and mean corpuscular haemoglobin decreased slightly in rams supplemented with M. pruriens pellets. Reduction of serum biochemical parameters was also noticed in rams supplemented with M. pruriens pellets. It can be concluded that L. purpureus pellets ranked the best among the herbaceous legume pellets as supplemental feed for West African dwarf sheep resulting in higher weight gain and better feed conversion efficiency with no deleterious effect on blood profile.


Animal performance Blood parameters Herbaceous legume pellets Panicum maximum Rams 


Funding information

The authors received the 2014 Tertiary Education Trust Fund Nigeria (TETFUND) Grant (No TETFUND/ESS.D/10./LR) offered as a support for this research through the Directorate of Grants Management, Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Nigeria.

Compliance with ethical standards

This research was in compliance with the guideline and animal experimentation protocol of the College of Animal Science and Livestock Production, Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Nigeria.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Victoria Olubunmi A. Ojo
    • 1
    Email author
  • Damilola Kola Oyaniran
    • 1
  • Ayotunde Oluseun Ogunsakin
    • 1
  • Ronke Yemisi Aderinboye
    • 2
  • Oludotun Olusegun Adelusi
    • 2
  • Folakemi Seidat Odusoga
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Pasture and Range ManagementFederal University of AgricultureAbeokutaNigeria
  2. 2.Department of Animal NutritionFederal University of AgricultureAbeokutaNigeria

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